Super Eagles and Nottingham Forest Striker Taiwo Awoniyi has been ruled out of the forthcoming Africa Cup of Nations after suffering a groin injury while on international duty.
The striker featured for an hour in Nigeria’s 1-1 draw against Lesotho in their 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying opener at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium last Thursday.
Forest’s manager Steve Cooper confirmed that the Nigerian has undergone a successful surgery and will be out for months while the club will support his recovery all the way.
“It’s bad news on Taiwo, he’s had to have surgery and he is going to be out for months,” Cooper said in a press conference ahead of their game against Brighton on Saturday.
“We’ll support him and try to get him back as quick and as fit as he can be, but it’s a really unfortunate situation and a blow for him.
“He’s become an important player for us with the goals he’s scored and the goals he will score for us, but he’s such a good guy and a good professional who is desperate to do well, so to get an injury like this is harsh on him.
“We’ve got to support him through the process of coming back stronger. He’s done that once before here and I’m sure he will give everything again like he did last time.
“You think about how well he did when he returned last season, I’m sure that’s given him a good reference point to come back to.
“We’ll definitely see him again this season, but it’s groin surgery so it will take a little while.”
The 2023 AFCON – which was moved to next year – hold in Ivory Coast from January 3, 2024 to February 11, 2024